Davide Gardini hits at the net against Grand Canyon. (Decker Westenburg)

BYU men’s volleyball drops 6th straight in home loss to Grand Canyon

No. 13 BYU men’s volleyball’s losing streak extended to six games with a loss to No. 9 Grand Canyon in four sets, 3-1 in the Smith Fieldhouse.

BYU got off to a promising start winning the first set 25-21, but the Cougars were not able to carry that momentum into the next three sets.

Grand Canyon responded by winning the final three sets 25-19, 25-19 and 25-22 to give the Lopes their first win in Provo in program history.

The Cougars continue to struggle during the losing streak having to replace much of last year’s national runner-up roster. The inexperienced roster for BYU has shown flashes at times but the losses continue to pile up.

After finding themselves down two sets to one, BYU rallied late in the fourth set to tie the set up at 22 on a Davide Gardini service ace. 

Unfortunately for BYU, Grand Canyon responded with a 3-0 run to close out the set and the match to take the first game of a back-to-back matchup between the conference foes.

Grand Canyon was able to control the net for most of the night, ending the match with 59 kills, nine blocks and recording a hitting percentage of .412 compared to BYU’s hitting percentage of .310.

BYU was paced by Gardini who, despite the losses, has continued his stellar individual performance so far this season. He led the Cougars with 15 kills and a hitting percentage of .690 along with 2 service aces. Miks Ramanis added 14 kills for BYU.

Christian Janke had 21 kills to lead the way for the Antelopes while reigning MPSF Player of the Week Camden Gianni added 16 kills. 

BYU found itself down a starter heading into the match. BYUtv’s Jarom Jordan reported before the game that BYU’s setter Zeo Meyer was dismissed from the team for the remainder of the season. Bartosz Slawinski started in place of Meyer and ended the game with 40 assists.

BYU’s record falls to 5-8 on the season and 0-1 in the conference. Grand Canyon’s record improves to 8-6 overall and 2-1 in the MPSF. The two teams will match up again tomorrow night at 7 p.m. MT on BYUtv at the Smith Fieldhouse.

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